A French composer born in 1970 in Boulogne-Billancourt.
A pianist by training, Guillaume Connesson studied at the regional conservatories of Boulogne-Billancourt and Paris, where he won notably First Prizes for choral conducting, electroacoustics and orchestration. He also followed the compositional advice of Marcel Landowski (1989-1994).
Connesson’s references are Couperin, Wagner, Strauss, Debussy, Ravel, Stravinsky, Messiaen, Dutilleux, as well as Steve Reich and above all John Adams. Influenced by all kinds of music, both classical and traditional, including Claude François, Elvis Presley, James Brown and techno music, Connesson is fascinated by rhythmic pulsation, the lyricism of the voice and the aural alchemy of the orchestra. Renewed consonance, harmonic research at the service of expression and rhythmic liveliness are the characteristics of his output.
He composes for all combinations with a predilection for the orchestra. Works include Disco Toccata for clarinet and cello, first performed by Philippe Cuper and Eric Watelle in Rouen (1994); L’aurore for orchestra, commissioned and first performed by the Orchestre National d'Île-de-France in Valence (1999); Enluminures for orchestra, commissioned and first performed by the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France at the Maison de la Radio (2000); Techno-parade for flute, clarinet and piano, first performed by Eric Le Sage, Paul Meyer and Emmanuel Pahud at the festival of L’Empéri (2002); Athanor for soprano, baritone, chorus and orchestra, commissioned and first performed by Virginie Pesch, Nigel Smith and the Chorus and Orchestre National de France at the festival Présences of Radio France (2003); Lucifer, ballet music for orchestra, first performed by the Malandain Ballet Biarritz and the Orchestre de Pau Pays de Béarn at the Zénith in Pau (2011); Pour sortir au jour, concerto for flute and orchestra, commissioned by and first performed by Mathieu Dufour and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in Chicago (2013); Eiréné, poème nocturne fororchestra, first performed by the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam (2017); Les Bains macabres, opera comique with a libretto by Olivier Bleys, commissioned by the Opéra National de Bordeaux, first performed by Les Frivolités Parisiennes at the Théâtre de Compiègne (2019).
An associate composer of the Brussels Philharmonic since 2016, Connesson has had many residencies with orchestras, including the Orchestre National de Lyon (2016-2018), the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra (2017-2018) and the Orchestre National d’Île-de-France (2019-2021). He is also a teacher of orchestration at the Conservatory of Aubervilliers-La Courneuve.
Guillaume Connesson has been awarded notably the Grand Prix Sacem (2012) and was voted composer of the year at the Victoires de la Musique Classique in 2015 and again in 2019.